Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Strengthening and Flexibility

After more than a month of holiday frenzy at the mall Customer Service desk things are back to normal. Right after New Year's Day the seasonal calendar with extra hours came down off the bulletin board in the office, replaced with the regular leaner schedule.  By yesterday all the schools were back in session, and the regular mall walkers were stopping by the desk to say they were glad to get back in their routines.

Eleven months out of the year I start at noon on Tuesdays.  During December that changed to 11:00, which meant I had to miss my weekly Piloga class at the gym. Today, I was able to get back to it.

What's Piloga (AKA Pi-Yoga, or piyoga)?  It's a combination of Pilates moves and yoga poses.  The Pilates helps with abdominal and core strengthening and the yoga lengthens muscles and increases flexibility. I always feel better when I walk out after a session.  The Piloga class starts at 10:00, and runs for one hour.  I can get my exercise, dress for work in the locker room, and run one errand before my shift starts. There's no time to shower, but I do it first thing in the morning and the class doesn't leave me too sweaty.

Today at 9:55 I was standing in front of the group exercise room waiting for the previous class to finish so I could go in and claim my section of the floor with my mat.  It felt good to be there.  As I waited for the class to start I chatted with other "regulars" that I hadn't seen for the last month.

Pilates is all about the core muscles. After a month I expected to have trouble doing the exercises but it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. Except for the roll ups.

In theory, they're supposed to be a smooth curl up from a prone position on the floor to a seated position, then back down one vertebrae at a time. Last year I'd worked up to doing six good ones at a time. Today, though, I felt like I was back at the beginning; my movement was jerky, and I had to cheat and use my arms to get all the way up.   We did two sets, separated by some stretches.  The second set was even worse than the first; my already-tired muscles refused to cooperate.

The class ended in the traditional way with a period of relaxation and meditation.  I think today that was my favorite part of the hour!

14 comments:

  1. I've never seen Pilates done and have always wondered about it. It sounds good... but I think I'll stick to my zumba. :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Zumba is the class I miss the most at the gym; it's never offered at a time that's convenient for my schedule :-(

      Delete
  2. It's tough how you can lose your flexibility if you don't go regularly. I love the gym.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know you go to the gym much more than I do, but someday my schedule will change and I'll be able to get there on a regular basis

      Delete
  3. I'm a little sore today, having gone back to some treadmill and weight lifting. It's amazing how quickly we loose the muscle tone! It will come back, though, and I agree it feels good!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know! We work so hard to get in shape, and it's gone overnight :-)

      Delete
  4. Kathy good for you that things are back to 'normal'; sounds like a bit of an ouch to get back into the exercise routine but good for you for doing so.

    Have a great week!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, my muscles were a bit sore today...

      Delete
  5. The relaxation and meditation part sounds like my speed!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sometimes it's my favorite part of the hour!

      Delete
  6. That's great that you went back to it. Whenever I take a break from exercising its hard to start over even if its something I enjoy.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It IS hard to motivate yourself after a break.

      Delete
  7. I have been doing your vertebra sit-up exercise and it's really strengthening my core. Probably good for my spine too. Thanks for the tip.

    ReplyDelete